How Can You Prevent Getting Or Transmitting Hiv Through Sex
There are several ways to prevent getting or transmitting HIV through anal or vaginal sex.
If you are HIV-negative, you can use HIV prevention medicine known as pre-exposure prophylaxis or post-exposure prophylaxis to protect yourself. You can also use other HIV prevention methods, below.
If you have HIV, the most important thing you can do to prevent transmission and stay healthy is to take your HIV medicine , every day, exactly as prescribed. People living with HIV who take HIV medicine daily as prescribed and get and keep an undetectable viral load have effectively no risk of sexually transmitting HIV to their HIV-negative partners. Read more about Treatment as Prevention. There also are other options to choose from, below.
How Safe Is Oral Sex
Although it is possible to become infected with HIV through oral sex, the risk of becoming infected in this way is much lower than the risk of infection via unprotected sexual intercourse with a man or woman.When giving oral sex to a man a person could become infected with HIV if infected semen came into contact with damaged and receding gums, or any cuts or sores they might have in their mouth.
Giving oral sex to a woman is also considered relatively low risk. Transmission could take place if infected sexual fluids from a woman got into the mouth of her partner. The likelihood of infection might be increased if there is menstrual blood involved or if the woman is infected with another sexually transmitted disease.
The likelihood of either a man or a woman becoming infected with HIV as a result of receiving oral sex is extremely low, as saliva does not contain infectious quantities of HIV.
What Are The Chances Of Becoming Infected If He Doesnt Ejaculate Inside Me
While research suggests that high concentrations of HIV can sometimes be detected in precum, it is difficult to judge whether HIV is present in sufficient quantities for infection to occur. To guard against the possibility of infection with HIV or any other STI it is best to practice safer sex by using condoms.
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Putting A Number On It: The Risk From An Exposure To Hiv
This information was provided by CATIE . For more information, contact CATIE at 1-800-263-1638.
Service providers working in HIV prevention are often asked by their patients and clients about the risk of HIV transmission from an exposure to HIV through sex. What do the latest studies tell us about this risk? And how should we interpret and communicate the results?
Ways Hiv Can Be Transmitted
How is HIV passed from one person to another?
;Most people who get HIV get it through anal or vaginal sex, or sharing needles, syringes, or other drug injection equipment . But there are powerful tools that can help prevent HIV;transmission.
Can I get HIV from anal sex?
You can get HIV if you have anal sex;with someone who has HIV without using protection .
- Anal sex is the riskiest type of sex for getting or transmitting HIV.
- Being the receptive partner is riskier for getting HIV than being the insertive partner .
- The bottoms risk of getting HIV is very high because the rectums lining is thin and may allow HIV to enter the body during anal sex.
- The top is also at risk because HIV can enter the body through the opening at the tip of the penis , the foreskin if; the penis isnt circumcised, or small cuts, scratches, or open sores anywhere on the penis.
Can I get HIV from vaginal sex?
You can get HIV if you have vaginal sex;with someone who has HIV without using protection .
Can HIV be transmitted from a mother to her baby?
HIV can be transmitted from a mother to her baby during pregnancy, birth, or breastfeeding. However, it is less common because of advances in HIV prevention and treatment.
Can I get HIV from sharing needles, syringes, or other drug injection equipment?
You are at high risk for getting HIV if you ; with someone who has HIV. Never share needles or other equipment to inject drugs, hormones, steroids, or silicone.
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Is Unprotected Anal Intercourse More Of An Hiv Risk Than Vaginal Or Oral Sex
Unprotected anal intercourse does carry a higher risk than most other forms of sexual activity. The lining of the rectum has fewer cells than that of the vagina, and therefore can be damaged more easily, causing bleeding during intercourse. This can then be a route into the bloodstream for infected sexual fluids or blood. There is also a risk to the insertive partner during anal intercourse, though this is lower than the risk to the receptive partner.
How Do You Get Or Transmit Hiv
You can only get HIV by coming into direct contact with certain body fluids from a person with HIV who has a detectable viral load. These fluids are:
- Semen and pre-seminal fluid
- Rectal fluids
- Vaginal fluids
- Breast milk
For transmission to occur, the HIV in these fluids must get into the bloodstream of an HIV-negative person through a mucous membrane ; open cuts or sores; or by direct injection.
People with HIV who take HIV medicine daily as prescribed and get and keep an undetectable viral load have effectively no risk of sexually transmitting HIV to their HIV-negative partners.
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Be Aware Of Potential Symptoms
If you have sex, knowing what symptoms could indicate an STI is a must.
See a healthcare professional if you notice any of the following:
- unusual discharge from the anus, penis, or vagina
- changes in urination, like pain or burning, frequency, or urgency
- sores, warts, or blisters on or around your genitals or anus
- unusual vaginal bleeding, like after sexual activity or between periods
- genital itching
Are certain activities higher risk?
Penis-in-anus sex is the riskiest, especially for the receptive partner because the rectums lining is thin, making it easier for the virus to enter the bloodstream.
Penis-in-vagina sex, though not as risky, is also considered higher risk activity for both parties.
Ways Hiv Is Not Transmitted
How well does HIV survive outside the body?
HIV does not survive long outside the human body , and it cannot reproduce outside a human host. It;is not;transmitted
- Through saliva, tears, or sweat.
- Through other sexual activities that dont involve the exchange of body fluids .
- Through the air.
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Transmission Risk In Men
Through the male is at somewhat less risk for HIV than his female sexual partner, HIV can enter either through his urethra or through small cuts or open sores on the penis.
Additionally, men who are uncircumcised tend to be more vulnerable to HIV than men who are circumcised. The bacterial population that exists beneath a foreskin can thrive due to the moist environment. The immune system naturally responds by triggering a modest immune defense;to keep an infection at bay. Again, ironically, CD4 cells can be called to the front lines of defense, making transmission all the easier.
Ways The Virus Can Spread And Ways It Cannot
HIV is a virus that can be transmitted from someone with HIV to someone without through body fluids like semen, blood, vaginal secretions, and breast milk. HIV is most commonly passed during unprotected sex, primarily anal and vaginal sex, but is also effectively transmitted through . HIV can also be passed from mother to child via the placenta during pregnancy or during childbirth, due to exposure to blood or vaginal fluid, or while breastfeeding.
Theresa Chiechi / Verywell
Some modes of transmission are more efficient than others. In order for HIV to be transmitted, the virus needs to come into contact with porous mucous membranes , pass through breaks and tears in tissues , or enter the bloodstream directly .
Moreover, there is needs to be ample quantities of the virus to breach the bodys frontline immune defenses. This is why HIV cannot be passed through saliva, the environment of which is hostile to the virus, or when the virus is fully suppressed in an HIV-positive person on antiretroviral therapy.
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Viral Load & Medications
If someone has HIV, this does not mean that they are restricted to celibacy. Many people with HIV still continue to have safe, enjoyable sex lives without spreading the virus. Always using a condom or barrier method is an important first step to prevent the sharing of HIV containing fluids.
Antiretroviral therapy : Another way to help decrease the risk of spreading HIV is to lower a personâs viral loadâthe amount of HIV in a personâs blood. Viral loads can be lowered using medications called antiretroviral therapy . These medications can lower the HIV viral load so much that HIV may not even be detectable on a blood testâthis is called an undetectable viral load . When a person’s viral load in undetectable, they have effectively no risk of transmitting the HIV virus to a non-infected partner . Taking these medication will help keep a person with HIV healthy while also helping prevent the spread of HIV to another person. This is not a cure, however. If medication is taken incorrectly or stopped, HIV viral loads will increase again and transmission can occur. Condoms and other barrier methods should still always be used during sex .
Whats The Short Answer
Yes, its possible to get HIV from putting the tip in. And that can be from putting the tip of a penis into the butt, vagina, or mouth.
The risk of getting HIV from the tip varies between the body parts and other factors, like whether youre the one giving or receiving said tip, if one or both parties are taking HIV meds, and more.
Lets break down some common scenarios to help you gauge your risk.
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Talking To Your Health Care Provider
Your provider or other members of your health care team may ask you about your sexual practices each time you go in for a checkup. It may feel embarrassing at first to be honest and open. But they are trying to help you stay healthy.
Your VA provider and staff will still give you care if you have had sex with someone of the same sex or someone other than your spouse. VA is not there to judge you. It’s OK to tell your providers the truth. It will not affect your medical benefits. It will help your health care team take better care of you.
Make sure you set aside time to ask questions about safer sex, sexually transmitted diseases , or any other questions you might have. If you feel that you need help dealing with your feelings, ask about support groups or counseling.
Many people living with HIV ask their provider to talk with them and their partners about HIV and how it is transmitted. They can answer technical questions and address the specifics of your situation. If you live with someone, they may have questions about everyday contact as well as sexual contact.
Who Is At Greater Risk
The transmission and acquisition of HIV from vaginal intercourse are high in cases of condom-less sex, both in women and men. While the risk tends to be higher among women due to biologic vulnerability , men are also at risk with everything from concurrent sexually transmitted diseases to circumcision status adding to that risk.
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What Is ‘safer Sex’
We know a lot about how HIV is transmitted from person to person. Having safer sex means you take this into account and avoid risky practices.
There are two reasons to practice safer sex: to protect yourself and to protect others.
If you have HIV, you need to protect your health. When it comes to sex, this means practicing safer sex to avoid sexually transmitted diseases like herpes and hepatitis. HIV makes it harder for your body to fight off diseases. What might be a small health problem for someone without HIV could be big health problem for you. Your VA provider can prescribe condoms for you if you need them.
Protecting your partner
Taking care of others means making sure that you do not pass HIV or any other sexually transmitted infections to them.
“Being safe” usually means protecting yourself and others by using condoms for the highest-risk sex activities, specifically for anal and vaginal sex. When done correctly, condom use is very effective at preventing HIV transmission. In recent years, “being safe” has come to include two other important strategies for reducing HIV infections: 1. HIV treatment for people with HIV and, 2. PrEP for HIV negative people . Both are very effective at reducing the risk of HIV infection. One or more of them is likely to be appropriate for your situation–be sure to ask your health care provider for more information.
What about antiretroviral therapy for HIV prevention?
What about pre-exposure prophylaxis ?
Stay On Top Of Medications Including Art Prep And Pep
Weve come a long way in HIV treatment and prevention, and some drugs can help you reduce the risk of transmission if youre living with HIV or are having sex with someone who is.
Talk with a medical professional about:
- ART: Antiretroviral therapy helps a person living with HIV stay healthy by lowering the viral load. Most people who take it as prescribed can lower their viral load to an undetectable level, so they cant transmit the virus to others.
- PrEP: A person whos HIV-negative significantly reduces their risk of contracting HIV by taking PrEP consistently.
- PEP: In the event of potential exposure to HIV, PEP is available for emergency use. It can help prevent HIV infection if started within 72 hours of exposure.
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Exploring Hiv Transmission Rates
World Health Organization , about 36.7 million people worldwide lived with HIV as of 2016. Still, thanks to antiretroviral therapy , people with HIV are leading longer, better quality lives. Many of these strides have been made in the United States.
To help reduce the risk of transmission, its important to understand how the virus is spread. HIV is only transmitted through bodily fluids, such as:
- breast milk
Learn which type of exposure is most likely to transmit the virus and how antiretroviral drugs are making a difference.
, direct blood transfusion is the route of exposure that poses the highest risk of transmission. While uncommon, receiving a blood transfusion from a donor with HIV may increase the risk.
The CDC also discusses HIV transmission risk in terms of how many times the virus is likely to be transmitted per 10,000 exposures. For example, for every 10,000 blood transfusions from a donor with HIV, the virus is likely to be transmitted 9,250 times.
Since 1985, however, blood banks have adopted stricter screening measures to identify blood with HIV. Now all blood donations are carefully tested for HIV. If they test positive, theyre discarded. As a result, the risk of contracting HIV from a blood transfusion is very low.
Hiv Treatment As Prevention
People with HIV can take ART to lower their chance of transmitting HIV to others.
ART reduces the quantity of HIV in the body, or viral load, and keeps it at a low level.
The term viral load refers to the number of HIV copies per milliliter of blood.
Healthcare professionals define successful viral suppression as having a viral load of less than of HIV per milliliter of blood. Achieving and maintaining viral suppression significantly reduces the risk of HIV transmission.
Other ways to prevent HIV transmission include:
- using a condom or other barrier method during sex
- reducing the number of sexual partners
- getting vaccinated against other STIs, such as HPV and hepatitis B
- avoiding using injectable drugs, if possible
- if using injectable drugs, avoiding sharing needles and syringes
- following all workplace safety protocols
People can speak with a doctor to learn more about their individual risk of contracting HIV.
Anyone concerned about HIV exposure should contact a healthcare professional or a local emergency room to get testedand receive PEP.
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Oral Sex With A Vagina
The risk of transmission through oral sex with a vagina is very low because the mouth is an unfriendly environment for HIV. Saliva breaks down the virus, and the mucous membranes in the mouth are more protective than anal or vaginal tissue. The minimal risk of transmission from oral sex with a vagina is only for the person performing the oral sex, as their mouth is in contact with vaginal fluid. However, there is little data documenting HIV transmission via oral sex from an infected vagina to an uninfected person.
Performing oral sex on a vagina during menstruation increases the risk, because blood has more HIV than vaginal fluid.
A person receiving oral sex is generally not at risk as that person is coming into contact only with saliva, which does not transmit HIV. The presence of other sexually transmitted infections can increase the risk of HIV transmission during oral sex.